Peter Lammerts doesn’t golf or fish – but his latest invention does both.
The retired heavy-duty mechanic says the Floating Golf Cart, or Golfish, can take you through a full day of recreation: a trip through town and a round of golf, followed by fishing at the nearest lake or river.
Lammerts, 70, had friends suggest he try to build an amphibious vehicle, after seeing his 1960s German-made Amphibicar.
“Are you nuts?” he asked them.
But a seed was planted.
“And then one night lying in bed, [I thought] what the hell is the difference between this and a float plane?”
Lammerts began designing pontoons for a gas-powered golf cart that swing up and store overhead when the vehicle is on land. He says it only took a few tries to find the right shape and size to keep the cart afloat.
“And then I figured I need to make it unsinkable, so I got the latest technology in styrofoam inside the pontoons,” he says. “We were out in it with a thousand pounds of people and forgot to put the plugs in – she went down another two inches. Can’t sink it.”
|Peter Lammerts pilots his Floating Golf Cart on the Fraser River with friend Brian Davies along for the ride.|
The Golfish converts from golf cart to fishing vessel in a matter of seconds and can roll straight into a body of water from a boat launch. Once afloat, Lammerts lowers and fires up a store-bought boat motor attached to the back and uses the same nautically themed steering wheel to navigate, as the wheels become rudders.
Lammerts says he’s been an inventor his whole life, earning two Manning Innovation Awards nominations over the years.
“My parents used to freak out because even as a kid, like seven years old, as soon as I bought a toy I’d take it apart and then they would be mad because I couldn’t put it back together,” he says. “And then, as I got a little older, I started putting them back together again and that’s always been my hobby, is tinkering.”
Lammerts is in the process of patenting the convertible pontoons.
He says he has seen great interest in the invention when he has taken it to Arizona, where some towns allow golf carts on city roads. He envisions those communities to be his prime market for the Floating Golf Cart, which he anticipates will retail for approximately $26,000.